From David Lawani, Benin:
The late Mrs Deborah Mankini Alabi Scholarship Foundation has said it is supporting 15 indigent but brilliant Igarra Girls Grammar School Students in Igarra, Headquarters of Akoko Edo Local Government Area with the payment of their West Africa School Certificate Examination(WAESS) enrolment as part of her support for girl- child education.
Mrs Dora Dongo who made the donation on behalf of the Foundation via a cheque for the award to the Students in the School premises in the presence of their parents said she is excited that this rare opportunity is taking place also as an educator herself and she knows the challenge faced by this young Girls especially their parents in raising funds for this vital exam.
According to her,” The Foundation thought it wise that since Deborah started from here, and you know secondary school education is very important, the best thing was to honour her through this gesture. If she did not get it well from here, she would not have gotten to the post she attained. So, that is why they thought they should come here and after looking around and they were like, what do these children need? We found out that some of these children could not even pay for their West Africa Senior Secondary Certificate Examination(WASSCE).
“The essence is to awaken their intellectual curiosity. And you know without that they cannot go to tertiary institutions. So, she thought it wise that they should start from here by registering for 15 students for this exam for a start and then see how it goes. I believe the foundation mean well for this students. My advice for them is to be focus and remain committed to their studies. This is not a common ocurrence and my prayer is that; wherever this source of support is coming from May God bless and protect it in Jesus name, Amen,” she stated.
Miss Favour Akande, a beneficiary of the award said she is touched beyond words as she never thought help could come so easily in her favour at this difficult time. She expressed her joy thanking the foundation for a job well done.
She said: “I want to thank and appreciate the donor for her memory. May her soul rest in perfect peace. God will continue to be with her family. I must say that things were quite tough for us considering but this assistance came too unexpected. I’m happy about it. It has helped to lighten my parents burden. I can now focus and concentrate on my studies”.
One of the parents Mrs Mary Aliu who spoke on behalf of the other parents said they remain appreciative of the foundation gesture to them noting that this support came at the right time and they are all very grateful to God who planted the thought in the donor’s heart.
She added that the challenge faced by parents in the payments of school fees for their children was not easy saying,” May God continue to bless her. We are aware she is late but every good thing she left behind May it continue to flourish in Jesus name, Amen. Her family will continue to experience joy, happiness and good things. For her to have think it wise to put these smiles on our faces through this kind gesture, we wish her eternal rest and let her.”
The Principal of the Senior Secondary School, Mrs Funmi Ade-Ife in her remarks commended the donor and the foundation for a job well done saying this is unexpected and it will go a long way in assisting the Students to be focus and prepare for the exam.
She however cited a case of one of the students who had already stopped coming to school because her parents could not afford the enrolment noting:” I already had one of my bright student who has stopped coming to school until this rare opportunity came. Just like they say that when you educate a woman you empower a nation. The position of the Girl Child Education remains. Her education is just too vital to be overlook.
“I specifically want to thank her and the foundation. This gesture came at the Nick of time. This Girls are brilliant and they need to be supported. Imagine one person paying for this fifteen students? My prayer and wish for them is that God will continue to bless and enlarge their coast. This help will go a long way,” she noted.
She also thanked others who have been supporting the School one way or the other stressing the need that supports such as this cannot be a miscalculation as education remain the only legacy that the society can be proud of anytime.
Deborah Alabi attended Igarra girls grammar school and later Auchi Polytechnic before joining the Nigeria Customs Service where she served and rose through the ranks until her passing to glory on October 26, 2010. This award reminds us of her compassion and kindness, she is sorely missed.